The nature versus nurture debate focuses on the argument whether an individual is born the way we are i.e. being born evil or the way we are brought up by parents/guardian and our surroundings and whether they make us the way we are i.e. if a child is aggressive, is it because they are brought up in an aggressive environment. Determinism is the belief that your future is fixed or determined by what you have genetically inherited or either by your social environment and experience. Choice and interaction is the alternative to determinism and is the belief that people are able to take control of their own lives through the choices they make, like free will. Some people have the belief that everything is fixed by nature or nurture or that everything is a matter of choice.
However, it must be taken into consideration that human life involves an interaction of nature, nurture and the decisions and choices that people make. Biological programming is your genetics. Genes provide the instructions for structuring amino acids which in turn influence the proteins within our body cells thus programming chemical basis of our biology. Our body shape, size and behaviour all depend on the interaction of our biology with broader environmental. Human beings are a result of the interaction of genes and the environmental influences they are exposed to.
Maturation theory is a highly biological theory which regarded child development as an evolutionary approach where there is a genetically determined series of events that unfold automatically. It is believed that development has a biological process that occurs in predictable stages over time. Some aspects of development, such as the ability to speak a first language, are thought to be due to the inbuilt genetic process. It is said that children naturally become interested in the sounds and signs that they see around them and the ability to speak ‘unfolds’.
Although development may be guided by genes, genes can’t operate without the environment. A child born Deaf will not start to speak a language, instead the child will learn to sign and communicate using sign language, if people in the child’s environment use this system. The environment always interacts with a person’s genetic inheritance including during maturational processes. In the nature nurture debate feral children can support people’s arguments. A feral child is a human child who has lived in isolation from human contact from a young age and has no experience of human care, loving or social behaviour and even human language. Feral children often become mentally and physically impaired.
There are a few examples of feral children like Genie who wasn’t discovered until she was 13 as her dad kept her confined in a room for all of her childhood. Genie was never spoken too so she had no first language. When genie was found she had the body of a 7 year old girl. Another example of a feral child was Oxana whose parents left her in kennels with several dogs and she lived there until she was rescued at 8 years old. She had the exact features of a dog and it took a lot to get out of the habits.
Courtney from Study Moose
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